It’s no secret that after my son was born I struggled with getting myself back to what I considered normal. The “Momover” has been going on for over two years, and while I have made some progress (slightly flatter stomach, better posture, decent jeans) there are still days when I long for the physical body I had ten years ago.
What I have learned is that I have the power to change my body, but only to a certain point. And then I have to accept my new version of normal. On the days when I am cool with this new normal, I can embrace things I might otherwise dismiss. I can be thankful that I am physically able to do everything I do and that my body didn’t completely go downhill after becoming a mother.
Other days, it’s harder to accept the current me. Even when I try to look at myself in the mirror without criticizing my body. Even when my husband tells me I look good. So when I first started reading Caitlin Boyle’s book Operation Beautiful, I was a little skeptical. After all, the cute childless author is more than ten years younger than I am. She is a trim triathlete who has never, to my knowledge, had a baby. Where does she get off writing a book on feeling good about yourself?
As it turns out, like most women, she too has struggled with body image and unhealthy habits. But what began as a simple positive message for herself has grown into an international movement of women uplifting each other.
Operation Beautiful is filled with stories from women of all ages and backgrounds about how a single post-it note with the message “You are beautiful” actually made them feel beautiful and want to pass it along to others. Her message is that beauty comes from within and should not be defined by the images of women we see in magazines. We are all beautiful in a unique way. A talent for playing guitar that brings a smile to those who listen. An ability to write a story in a way that makes it become the reader’s story. A gift for caring for others… especially our own children.
Inner beauty is something I have always wanted. Operation Beautiful reminded me that I already have it, and so do each of you. So I wrote my own personal message as a reminder of my inner beauty and am passing that note along to all of you. My beautiful readers.
Ps. Leave a comment for a chance to win your own copy of Operation Beautiful!